Call 413.540.1234 to
schedule an appointment
CONCERN/EAP: 413.534.2625
Billing questions? Call: 413.540.1212
CRISIS: 413.733.6661

Child Development & Parenting: Early (3-7)
Resources
Basic Information
Development During Early Childhood, Toddler, and Preschool Stages Parenting Your Todder, Preschooler, and Young ChildToilet TrainingDisciplining Your Toddler, Preschooler, and Young ChildNurturing Your Toddler, Preschooler, and Young Child
Latest News
Are Kids' Playgrounds Really Safe?Make Those School Lunches More NutritiousHealth Tip: Create a Reading-Friendly HomeOld-Fashioned Play Beats Digital Toys for Kids, Pediatricians SayCould Young Age at School Start Lead to False Diagnosis of ADHD?Health Tip: Prevent Temper TantrumsBringing Baby in a Lyft, Uber? Child Car Seats Are Rarely IncludedHealth Tip: Ease Separation AnxietySoft Furniture No Cushion Against Falls for Young KidsWhat Kids -- and Parents -- Fear Most at the Doctor's OfficeSkip the Cold Meds for Kids Under 6, Experts SayPath to Obesity May Start in PreschoolHealth Tip: Help Your Child Deal With Night TerrorsParents Fret Over Fussy Eaters - but What Works?Talking to Baby Might Boost Middle School SuccessHealth Tip: Promote Play for Your ChildEarly Eye Checks for Kids a Smart MovePediatricians Make Change to Child Car Seat GuidelinesHealth Tip: Pool Fencing Helps Prevent DrowningHealth Tip: Manage the Terrible 3'sHealth Tip: Your Toddler Can Be a VegetarianKids' Play Is Healthy, Pediatricians' Group SaysGive Your Child a Head Start With MathPicture This -- It Makes Kids Eat More VeggiesPreschoolers' Parents May Be Unprepared to Treat AsthmaHealth Tip: When Small Children Play Near WaterHealth Tip: Ear Tubes May Help Prevent Ear InfectionsDim the Lights to Help Your Child Fall AsleepAre You Car Seat Savvy?Many Young Kids Not Screened for Developmental DelaysA-C-T to Prevent Hot Car TragediesLook Before Locking: Protect Your Child From a Hot Car Tragedy25 U.S. Kids Treated in ERs Every Hour for Bike InjuriesSmartphone-Obsessed Parents May Mean Cranky KidsPediatricians Say No to SpankingNo Safety Concerns With DTaP Combo Vaccine for Kids: StudyCan Excess Weight in Toddlers Cause Brain Drain?Health Tip: How to Help Your Child Develop Healthy RelationshipsMany Parents Miss Speech Disorders in Young KidsCuriosity a Plus in the Classroom, Particularly for Poorer KidsSimple Drug Packaging Change Could Save Toddlers' LivesHealth Tip: Prevent Hand, Foot and Mouth DiseaseMultiple Anesthesia Exposures Affect Learning and AttentionHealth Tip: Milestones to Look for by Age 5Anesthesia Doesn't Seem to Harm Child's IQ: StudyE-Cig Liquid Remains a Poisoning Danger to Young KidsHealth Tip: Prevent Poisoning at HomeHeath Tip; How to Introduce Your Child to PeanutsVideo Games May Be OK for Toddlers -- If Mom or Dad Join InEven Toddlers Endangered by Opioids, Other Addictive Drugs
Questions and AnswersLinksBook Reviews
Related Topics

Child & Adolescent Development: Overview
Childhood Mental Disorders and Illnesses
Parenting
Child Development & Parenting: Infants (0-2)
Child Development & Parenting: Middle (8-11)

Early Eye Checks for Kids a Smart Move

HealthDay News
by -- Robert Preidt
Updated: Sep 1st 2018

new article illustration

SATURDAY, Sept. 1, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- The earlier the better when it comes to having your child's vision checked, eye experts say.

"Babies must have a vision screening by a health care professional soon after they are born, which must include an evaluation of the 'red reflex' of the eyes," said Marcela Frazier. She's an associate professor at the University of Alabama at Birmingham's department of ophthalmology and visual sciences.

The red reflex test checks for abnormalities in the back of the eye.

"If an eye problem is suspected, then a comprehensive eye exam that includes the use of eye drops to dilate the pupil should be scheduled immediately. Children with developmental delays should also have a comprehensive eye exam, even if the vision screening is normal," Frazier advised in a university news release.

Katherine Weise is a professor in the School of Optometry at UAB. "Vision screenings are good for detecting eye and visual conditions that may require further testing," she said.

"A dilated eye exam allows for a more comprehensive look at the health of the eye. It also allows the eye doctor to determine the best glasses prescription for the child, if needed," Weise explained.

She said "drops make it difficult for the child to see up close for a while and create a sensitivity to light. However, more accurate information is obtained from eye doctors who use dilating drops to examine the eyes of children."

There are a number of signs that children may have vision problems.

"Squinting indicates a potential need for glasses, and covering an eye while reading indicates a potential difficulty in getting the eyes to work together efficiently," Weise said.

Also, "complaints of eyestrain, intermittent blur or double vision, frequent headaches during the school week, or skipping lines and words when reading" may suggest a problem with eye coordination and tracking properly while reading, she said.

Parents also need to take steps to prevent eye injuries in children.

"Sport-related eye injuries are very common; therefore, we recommend sports goggles," Frazier said.

"Injuries due to BB guns and fireworks are also very prominent and devastating. Some toys can have sharp edges that can cause injuries, so proper parental supervision is a must," she said.

Frazier also warned that some household cleaning products can cause "severe damage when they come in contact with the eye; they must be stored away from the reach of children."

More information

The American Academy of Pediatrics has more on vision screenings.